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  • 3/15/2011

Sheikh Mufid and Imam Sajjad

part 2


The message of Hussain (AS) was spreading from town to town and from country to country. The whole family then returned to Madina except the wife of Imam Hussain (AS). Her name was Umm-e-Rabab.

 She said that she would not return back home, for her home was here where her husband lay buried. She stayed in Karbala until she died a few years later. A small town flourished for the up keeps of pilgrims who began to visit the grave of Hussain (AS) and all the martyrs of Karbala. Having being released from confinement in Damascus, Imam came to live in Madina with his family and to lead a quiet life. But the city was in revolt against the cruel regime of Yazid.

Many tried to persuade the Imam to join them, but Imam knew their unreliability and he declined. So when Yazid's army invaded Madina, they left the Imam's family alone. Yet he was greatly shocked to see how for three days the invading army led by Muslim Ibn Aqaba who was charged with invading Madina, tied their horses in the Prophet's mosque, turning the sacred place into a filthy stable, killing hundreds of innocent people and playing havoc with chaste women. For three continuous days these beasts from Damascus ravaged the city and destroyed it. Imam had so much control over his emotions that he kept quiet. When different revolutionary parties rose to avenge the blood of Imam Hussain, he wisely kept aloof from them whose uprisings he deemed untimely.

No doubt Sulaiman Ibn Surad al-Khuzai and Mukhtar Ibn Obaidah ath-Thaqafi avenged Imam's precious blood. Imam Ali Zainul Abedeen had compassion for them; he prayed for them and for their success and often enquired about those who were captured and executed by Yazid's cruel regime. Certainly Mukhtar relieved the Imam's wounded heart by punishing the culprits.

But the Imam was so cautious that his outward appearance gave the impression that he was indifferent, so much so that the cruel Government could not implicate him of any subversion. Times were hard in Madina for the family of the Prophet. Imam Ali Ibne Hussain (Sajjad became his title because of his intense prostrations in prayers) lived for another 35 years after the event of Karbala.

He was the Imam of the time and it was his duty to spread guidance to the people. But how he would do that when a single word in favor of the Ahlulbayt would have meant certain death. No one dared to say that he followed the family of the Prophet. The Imam survived with the sheer will power and providence. He used to go to the mosque of the Prophet and some times prayed there all night. These were special prayers in the shape of supplications with great significance than mere ritual. These prayers were memorized by his companions, written down by his two sons, Mohammad and Zaid. Mohammad became the 5th Imam after the death of his father while Zaid rose against the rulers of his time and was martyred in Kufa. All these supplications were later collected by his companions in the shape of a book which was named "Al Saheefa el Sajjadiya". Several copies of the book were made and distributed among the followers.

Normal teachings of the Qur'an by the family of the Prophet were not allowed. With these supplications Imam taught his followers the relationship between God and the people.

 In ordinary language it is not possible to enhance the knowledge of God. But in the language of prayer, when one bows down before the creator, one realizes ones own meager self, in comparison with the immensity of the universe. All vanity or ego disappears. All thoughts of self indulgence vanish.

He relates himself with his creator in all humility and sublime self. His true self awakens which only exists to help others for they are all creatures of God. Emotions that were attached to his own Self disappear. He feels alone in the wide world. His only hope rests with his creator. God alone gives him hope and meaning of existence on earth. Side by side these supplications also gave the human race their Rights and duties with each other.

In the name of "Risalat-el- Huqooq" which was an addition to Saheefa, completed the meaning of Islam as a Deen of deeper spiritual understanding as well as the ways and means of lion this planet earth with other people. Imam's whole life was spent in helping all the people in the city of Madina. He was seen going during the darkness of the night with a sack full of bread for the hungry people of the city. They never knew the identity of the person, who gave them food night after night, but Imam's own companions knew the fact and they passed it on to the later generation to know and to learn. It was after his death that those hungry souls came to know the identity of their benefactor.

Imam performed thirty pilgrimages in all after the event of Karbala. Sometimes he would go for Hajj on the back of a camel, but sometimes on foot for 250 miles to Makka. Once he was traveling with a companion. When they reached the outskirts of Makka, the crowd of pilgrims going towards Makka was enormous. His companions shouted, "There is a lot of crowd for Hajj this year." Imam replied, "There is only you and me and this camel, the rest are animals." He was again teaching the meaning of Hajj which was to reach out for God with all your heart and do not just regard it as another ritual.

An incident occurred that is said to have provoked the jealousy of Hisham Ibn Abdul Malik who was heir apparent to his father and arrived in Makka with great pomp and a retinue of servants. But in spite of this, he was not able to reach for the Black Stone in the Ka'aba. In pilgrims garb Hisham was unrecognizable. He sat down on a high place waiting for the crowd to move so that he could also kiss the black stone. While he was waiting he saw an old man arrive and watched the crowd give way for him. He reached the Black stone, kissed it and returned back to his place. Hisham, being the son of the caliph was astonished and enquired about the identity of the person.

To be continued ...

Other Links:

Sayings of Imam Sadjad (a.s) on the Karbala Tragedy

A Small Selection of Imam Sadjad’s Sayings

The Secret Helper of the Poor

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